Matched betting has been a really great side hustle for me, and I make £12,000 in my first year of matched betting. The Cheltenham Festival is one of the best events in the year for profiting from the festival. In fact, I made £552 over the 4 day festival. Here are my top tips and tricks for getting the most out of this profitable time of year for matched betting.
What is matched betting?
Matched betting is a legal and tax free way to utlise offers that bookmakers give to new and existing customers. These offers can be turned into a guaranteed profit thanks to matched betting. It has been around for years now, and even The Guardian have written about it.
The amount of money that people make from matched betting varies and is dependent on a few things. How much money you can put into your matched betting pot, how much time you have and how many accounts you are able to create all impact your matched betting earnings.
In this post we are going to look at how matched betters can profit from Cheltenham 2020.
You can see all my previous matched betting income below. Please note that from January 2017 I have been focusing on growing my business with a provable income, with a lot less time to dedicate to matched betting:
- Month 1 earnings – £1,430
- Month 2 earnings – £1,619
- Month 3 earnings (including a Q&A) – £849
- October 2015 earnings – £1,105 (Remember that month 3 also overlaps into October 2015 as I switched to reporting it per calendar month.)
- November 2015 earnings– £915
- December 2015 earnings – £1,347
- January 2016 earnings – £777
- February 2016 earnings – £393 (on holiday for 2 weeks)
- March 2016 earnings - £701.64
- April 2016 earnings - £622.36
- May 2016 earnings - £1,019.16
- June 2016 earnings - £447.18 (away for a week)
- July 2016 earnings - £689.52
- August 2016 earnings - £491.86
- September 2016 earnings - £279.29
- October 2016 earnings - £691.85
- November 2016 earnings - £773.74
- December 2016 - £0.00 (took a break)
- January 2017 - £473.43
- February 2017 - £514.97
- March 2017 - £214.12
- April 2017 - £394.76
- May 2017 - £481.25
- June 2017 - £249.68
- July 2017 - £158.73
- August 2017 - £301.58
- September 2017 - £427.61
- October 2017 - £203.83 (away for 2 weeks)
- November 2017 - £45.84 (away for most of the month)
- December 2017 - £187.24
- January 2018 - £349.54
- February 2018 - £223.39
- March 2018 - £493.01
- April 2018 - £189.31
- May 2018 - took a break
- June 2018 - took a break
- July 2018 - £139.32
- August 2018 - £301.65
- September 2018 - £121.94 (on holiday)
- October 2018 - £328.51
- November 2018 - £459.31
- December 2018 - £258.45
- January 2019 - £148.37
- February 2019 - £199.84
- March 2019 - £579.54
- April onwards - paused for a mortgage application
What is Cheltenham Festival 2020 and when is it?
The Cheltenham Festival is an annual horse racing event held at Cheltenham racecourse. Over the 4 day period (Tuesday 10 March 2020 – Friday 13 March 2020) there are a total of 28 horse races.
Why is the Cheltenham Festival so profitable for matched bettors?
The Cheltenham Festival has lots of races with lots of media coverage, with many races appearing on ITV.
In order to entice people to place bets, bookmakers will be offering lots of free bets or other incentives.
As matched bettors, we can utilise these offers to guarantee profit.
I made a massive £552 in just 4 days during my first Cheltenham Festival as a match bettor.
How to prepare for Cheltenham 2020
Cheltenham is a profitable time of year regardless of whether you are new to matched betting, or a seasoned pro.
In order to use your time most efficiently I would highly recommend you have a platinum membership at Profit Accumulator. There are so many races during the festival that you need to be able to find offers quickly, and work out your bets equally as fast. Even though I have been matched betting for years now, I still have my Profit Accumulator membership as a massive time saver. At just £17.99 a month, it is a drop in the ocean compared to the money you can make at Cheltenham.
Or you can pay just £11.67 a month if you pay for an annual subscription with my offer.
If you have a goal, don't get too fixated on it. There's no magic formula that says having £x in your bank means you'll make £y. Do what you can and enjoy your profits.
You will need to ensure that you have a good starting pot during the festival. With 28 races on, the more money you have to utilise during the festival, the more offers you can complete. Completing more offers means earning more money.
You can use your existing matched betting pot, or spend some time regrowing your matched betting pot if you have had to dip into it. You might also want to consider using your savings towards Cheltenham, but only do so if you are 100% confident with matched betting.
Remember to keep your qualifying losses low. I aim for £1.50 per £25 bet, although sometimes I'm happy to take that up to £2. Remember that these qualifying losses add up, and can easily eat into your profit.
You will need to make some time during the festival to place your bets. Some people have even booked time off work, but if that isn't possible you are going to want to carry out offers when you can. It might mean making time before work, during your lunch break or when you get home from work, but the profits are definitely worth it.
If you can only do matched betting around work or other commitments over the festival, look for offers where the free bet won't expire before you get back to use it.
You also want to stay organised during the festival. With so many offers happening, and 28 races, you need to keep track of which offers you have completed and know where to find your free bets. My favourite way to stay on track is pen and paper, by writing out all of the races and offers I am doing. You can also use a spreadsheet if you want to get super organised.
If possible, tackle the offers in race order. If you tackle the last race of the day first then you might run out of money in your exchange, meaning that you can't make use of the offers throughout the day.
Paper. Lots of paper. And notes. And good record keeping.
Hydrate. This one is so simple, but there is so much going on that you need to make sure you are hydrated and eating properly too. Take breaks too.
If you have to order a take away because you've been so busy then do it – you deserve it!
Make sure other people in the house know what you're doing so that you don't get disturbed. I know, I know…kids and husbands can be annoying, but if at all possible, let them know that you can't be disturbed whilst getting your bets on.
Have multiple screens if possible. Another laptop, tablet or even your phone will help.
Set alarms on your phone for races. This is especially useful if you are getting a free bet for the next race.
Don't get caught out
Most of all, don't forget to read all of the offers carefully, and remember to ask any questions in the Profit Accumulator forum if you are unsure. The offers can vary greatly, and you might find that the same bookies change their rules on different days. Don't get too comfortable and make sure you check which races the offers apply to, as well as remembering things like Smarkets have 0% commission on the first Cheltenham race every day.
Familiarise yourself with horse racing refunds as soon as you can. These are different to straightforward opening offers, and take some getting used to, especially if you haven't done any before. They are easy though, and feel free to ask any questions along the way.
Remember that liability on the same race will be reduced if you are laying different outcomes. This means that you can often make use of more offers than you originally thought.
Keep on track of your free bets so they don't expire or get forgotten about. This one is pretty self explanatory – it would be a shame to get a free bet and it expires because you forgot about it. Set alarms, jot it down on paper, whatever.
Check your emails for offers that have been sent to you. Sometimes you will receive offers that don't appear on the bookie website.
Look for price boosts to get more profit.
Keep an eye on the locked in profit thread on Profit Accumulator.